I'm Jud. I sang for Cracks in the Sidewalk. The dates and events are sketchy but to the best of my crippled memory here's what happened. In late '85 Jez Velasquez and Ray Abeyta (my roommate) got together and jammed. After getting about 3 or 4 songs down they asked me to sing to the music, make up words. This was Ray on guitar, Jez on bass and me singing through an amp. After a few weeks we had about 6 or 7 songs and needed a drummer. Jez brought in her friend Chris Partain. Chris was in high school and I think this was his first band. Oh, and we named the band Down Boy Up. After practicing for a couple months we had our first show at Genivive Sprinkle's legendary Club Rec. It went pretty well but a few weeks later Ray got married and moved to NYC. Someone recommended a young guitar virtuoso named Tony Alred. Tony joined the band in early '86. We played a few parties then unceremoniously kicked him out. Sorry Tony, we love you. Jez had her eye on this guitar player, Gordon Andersen, who used to play with Jerry's Kids. He came over to jam. I lived and we practiced on 6th st. downtown, just around the corner from the police station. Gordy and I were close to the same age and we hit off right away. Plus he was such a cool player. Very improve, and jazzy. In fact, we all fit together amazingly. Jez's moody but melodic bass. Chris's tight drumming, punk to jazz, Gordy's recklessness and my naive theatrics really cooked. We wanted a new name and I believe the first suggestion, by Gordy, was Cracks in the Sidewalk. No others were mentioned. It was perfect...
No Albuquerque clubs would have anything to do with punk rock . Parties were the venue. My place, Club Rec, the nursery..living rooms and garages all over town. We played with other locals the Pepsi Generation, Korfu, Lace, 27 Devils Joking... Gordy mentioned his friend Manny Rettinger. Manny had a Label called Ubik Sound. He had been in a band call the Martian Funk Ensemble. Manny offered to record us and put out a cassette on his label. Cool. That weekend session resulted in our first record, self titled; Cracks in the Sidewalk. We played allot from '86 though '88 till our next record Down. We had a good enough rep as a live band to open for many top level punk rock acts traveling through town. Firehose, Butthole Surfers, Meat Puppets, Helmet, Soundgarden, Jane's Addiction....We also were the first abq band to go to SXSW in Austin. In '88 we went up to Santa Fe to record with Tim Stroh at Stepbridge Studios. We recorded Down in 2 consecutive weekends and that record really solidified our pop-punk creds. Fast, clever and uncompromising. This was vinyl kids! All analog!
As all punk rock stories go things were shaking up near '90. For reasons known by all the bands that ever existed in the history of music, the bass player left the band. Sad.. Jez left a serious hole in our music. What next? Who? Gordy brought Mike Rose in. Mike played with Gordy in Jerry's Kid's. Mike was a guitar player. Mike ( Mo) would play bass for us. With Mike we sort of stepped up a bit. He was a better player than the rest of us. Conceptually we still had no rules in our music making. No templates, we just went every where from hard crunching metal to fast, speed punk to jazz and funk contortions. But we practiced like motherfuckers! We liked to rage through our set without stopping between songs. This led to us mixing the end of one song with the beginning of the next. Kinda like successive car wrecks... When we returned from our first west coast tour at the end of '90 we went back up to Stepbridge to record Fucker's Concerto. We were playing very tight. Scary intuitive. A year later we toured again. These tours were the most fun I have ever had. Punk rock nation at it's best. We continued to open for traveling bands...Firehose were our perennial fans, Fugazi, the Rollins Band... In '92 we put out a single, Love Kit, with local label Resin Records. Cracks in the Sidewalk, Elephant, Big Damn Crazy Weight and All U Can Eat all put together some of the wildest shows in town. We all played the local venues; Sunshine Theatre, El Rey, Golden West, El Madrid and of course, Club Rec.
Things starting winding down. Chris was playing with Elephant as well as us. I was getting sorta of tired. Gordy, Mike and Chris could all play with anyone. I was a performer more than a singer and not much of a manager. A whole lot more happened than what I described here and I'm sure I got some things wrong. We had some great fans and not many enemies. There were births and deaths and a shitload of great music.
The band ended in 1996.
As of '05 this is how it stands. Mike Rose is living and breathing in Green Bay playing and writing music. Gordy is playing with facist-nob-core band Black Maria. Chris is playing with some redneck band called Breaker 19, oh and he and his partner Jason run the most successful tattoo parlor in the city. Jez writes songs and creates furry bunny flower images. I do computer tech support for a local high school and front a powerbook. Some of us are dad's and mom's now. We all are mostly happy and really proud of our band. Cracks in the Sidewalk was not only one of the best bands in the world it shaped our fucking lives forever.
comments? corrections? suggestion?